2020 Olympics

From BR Bullpen

Baseball is slated to return as a medal event in the 2020 Olympics after not being included in 2012 or 2016.

The games were originally scheduled to be held in Tokyo, Japan starting on July 24, 2020, but like many other sporting competitions around the world, they fell victim to the coronavirus pandemic that swept the planet in the early months of that year. At first, Japanese authorities were adamant that the games would be held as scheduled, stating that a delay was not an option, but reality got the better of that position. As it became clear that a return to some sort of normalcy would not happen in most of the world until the summer, and with massive travel restrictions in place, athletes finding themselves unable to train properly, and a number of qualifying events canceled or postponed, including the 2020 Final Olympic Qualification Tournament for baseball, the Japanese Organizing Committee came under great pressure to make a decision. With major national federations, including those of Canada and Australia announcing on March 22nd that they would not compete in the games if held as scheduled, and the United States Olympic Committee sending a petition to the Japanese to delay the games, there was little choice left. On March 24th, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters that he and International Olympic Committee Head Thomas Bach had agreed to postpone the games by one year, with the opening ceremonies scheduled for July 23, 2021.

Scheduled to be competing are Flag of Japan Japan, Flag of Israel Israel, Flag of South Korea South Korea, Flag of Mexico Mexico and two teams to be determined; Mexico and Israel will make their Olympic debuts. Both newcomers relied on American players - the Israelis on American Jewish players who obtained Israeli citizenship to help their Olympic chances and Mexico had many Mexican-Americans on their qualifying team. See also 2020 Olympics (Qualification).

Further Reading[edit]

  • Tom Schad: "2020 Tokyo Olympics officially postponed due to coronavirus outbreak", USA Today, March 24, 2020. [1]

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